Review of the best according to the editorial board. On the selection criteria. This material is subjective and does not constitute advertising and does not serve as a purchase guide. Before buying, you need to consult with a specialist.
Of all types of computer components, the term 'gaming computer' is most closely associated with a video card. But even the most powerful video card will be useless in a system with a weak processor that controls absolutely everything, including partly the video card itself. The editors of the online magazine, together with the RankQuality service team, present you an overview of the most efficient and productive processors in different price categories as of February 2020, taking into account, first of all, their gaming capabilities.
We will not go into details of the criteria for choosing a processor, since there is practically no competition in this narrow segment of the market. Just like 10 and 20 years ago, two tech giants – Intel and AMD are running the show, periodically overtaking each other. We will give the necessary explanations, tips and warnings during the description of specific series and modifications.
- Rating of the best gaming processors
- The best entry-level gaming processors
- Intel Core i3-8100
- AMD Ryzen 5 1600
- Intel Core i5-8400
- Best mid-range gaming processors
- AMD Ryzen 5 2600
- Intel Core i5-9400F
- Intel Core i5-9600K
- AMD Ryzen 5 3600
- The best high-end gaming processors
- Intel Core i7-8700K
- Intel Core i7-9700K
- AMD Ryzen 7 3700X
- Intel Core i9-9900KS
- The best top processors for gaming streaming
- AMD Ryzen 9 3950X
- Intel Core i9-9920X
Rating of the best gaming processors
|Nomination||a place||Name of product||price|
|The best entry-level gaming processors||1||Intel Core i3-8100||RUB 7,284|
|2||AMD Ryzen 5 1600||RUB 6,890|
|3||Intel Core i5-8400||RUB 11 839|
|Best mid-range gaming processors||1||AMD Ryzen 5 2600||RUB 7,475|
|2||Intel Core i5-9400F||RUB 10 100|
|3||Intel Core i5-9600K||RUB 15,500|
|4||AMD Ryzen 5 3600||RUB 12,590|
|The best high-end gaming processors||1||Intel Core i7-8700K||RUB 26,026|
|2||Intel Core i7-9700K||RUB 25,990|
|3||AMD Ryzen 7 3700X||RUB 14,190|
|4||Intel Core i9-9900KS||RUB 36,990|
|The best top processors for gaming streaming||1||AMD Ryzen 9 3950X||RUB 49,760|
|2||Intel Core i9-9920X||RUB 87 610|
The best entry-level gaming processors
To begin with, let's consider a short selection of processors that experts have attributed to the conditional base level. It is assumed here that if there is sufficient power of the rest of the hardware, the speed of the Internet connection, a computer based on one of the presented processors will easily 'pull' any online toy and all modern PC games. As for the latter, there is a caveat that the most recent releases will need to be optimized individually with graphics settings and other parameters that affect resource intensity.
Hereinafter, our specialists drew their conclusions by comparing the results of their own tests with the recommendations of recognized world organizations and specialized publications, such as PC Gamer, PC World, AnandTech, WePC.
Intel Core i3-8100
Let's start with the most modest in performance and at the same time the most inexpensive processor of the family Intel Core. This is the i3-8100 Here it should be understood that weaker representatives of the Core i3 series are also suitable for gaming. But our experts chose this level as the base one as the optimal combination of price and coverage of gaming opportunities.
Intel Core i3-8100 is a 2017-2018 model built using 14-nanometer lithography on 4 CoffeeLake cores in four threads with a frequency of 3.6 GHz. The multiplier is locked, that is, no overclocking is expected. For overclocking, a slightly more advanced Core i3-8350K model with an unlocked multiplier is suitable, but it is significantly more expensive.
This processor requires an FC LG A1151 motherboard. Rated heat dissipation TDP 65W. Compatible with DDR4 RAM up to 2.4GHz up to 64GB maximum, including 2-channel and error correction.
Built-in graphics module – Intel UHD Graphics 630. It is not suitable for games, so hereinafter we will not indicate the type of integrated graphics, but we will draw your attention only when an integrated video card is not provided at all.
This model supports the following technologies and instructions: AES-NI, AVX, Enhanced SpeedStep (EIST), Idle States, Thermal Monitoring. Security technologies: EDB, Secure Key, MPX, Identity Protection, OS Guard, SGX if present Intel ® ME. Technologies that accelerate the work of virtual machines: VT-d, VT-x, EPT.
Now let's translate these dry numbers and designations into the language of examples and compare them with the minimum and recommended characteristics of game developers. So, Intel Core i3-8100 fully covers the minimum and recommended specifications for such games with a margin: GTA V, Fortnite 2017, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, Crysis 3. Fits exactly into the recommended ones: PUBG, Battlefield V. Покрывает только минимальные требования: Metro Exodus, Far Cry 5, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. The list is provided for general information and, of course, does not cover the entire variety of modern video games.
For those who prefer processors of the direct competitor Intel – AMD, a comparable processor in terms of capabilities – AMD FX-8320. The further two models from AMD in the review are already much more powerful.
- 4 cores;
- support for dual-channel memory with error correction;
- affordable price;
- covers the recommended requirements of many modern games;
- relatively low heat dissipation;
- moderate power consumption.
- locked multiplier.
AMD Ryzen 5 1600
At number two in the selection of the most modest gaming processors is the representative of AMD's bright Ryzen series, which quickly revived the company Intel, seriously pushing its position in the market. AMD Ryzen 5 1600 is significantly higher than the previous model in terms of capabilities and approximately twice as expensive.
This is a desktop processor built on the Zen architecture in the 14nm manufacturing process. Contains 6 computing cores working in 12 threads in total. The maximum frequency is 3.2GHz. The multiplier is unlocked and allows overclocking up to 3.6GHz.
This is exactly the case when the processor does not contain an integrated graphics card. That is, when assembling a computer, you either need to buy game graphics right away, or, if the budget does not allow, temporarily install an inexpensive 'stub' in order to somehow use the PC until it is fully equipped.
This processor is installed on a socket AM4 motherboard. It is compatible with DDR4 RAM up to 2666MHz, including dual channel and error correction. Heat dissipation at the TDP level of 65 W, that is, similar to the significantly weaker previous model from Intel. Supports AES-NI, AVX and AMD-V virtualization technology.
This processor exhibits one of the best value / performance combinations. So, if we compare even with processors of a higher class, such as some series Intel Core i5, then AMD Ryzen 5 1600 shows results in some tests no worse, and even better in some places.
As for the characteristics recommended by game developers, we can immediately compare this model with the previous one. If Intel Core i3-8100 for Assassin's Creed Odyssey, Metro Exodus and Far Cry 5 covered only the minimum specifications, then the reviewed AMD Ryzen 5 1600 more than covers those recommended for the same toys. From this position and further on in the review, it makes no sense to compare the capabilities of processors with modern games, since they will all meet the recommended requirements, and the total performance of a gaming computer will already depend on other key components – a video card, memory, etc.
- 6 cores, 12 threads;
- low heat generation and power consumption;
- support for dual-channel memory, including ECC;
- one of the best combinations of cost and performance;
- covers with a margin the recommended characteristics of the most demanding games.
- no built-in graphics.
Intel Core i5-8400
The third and final position in the magazine's selection of the best budget processors for gaming is another decent and inexpensive production option Intel – the Core i5-8400 processor. In terms of its capabilities, it is already very close to the average gaming category.
This model was released in October 2017 and was initially focused on office systems, but this orientation is very conditional, and the processor performed very well even in the most demanding games. Many toys at that time had yet to go out into the world, but the Core i5-8400 resource obviously had a large supply so that average gamers could not think about upgrading for quite a long time.
The processor has 6 Coffee Lake cores operating in 6 threads at frequencies up to 4GHz. Built on the 14nm process technology. The multiplier is locked. Low heat dissipation – TDP 64W. Compatible with FC socket LG A1151. Despite the fact that the multiplier is not available, the overclocking options are still there, but they are limited by the proprietary technology Intel Turbo Boost version 2.0. It is within the framework of this 'gentle' overclocking that the maximum clock frequency of 4GHz is achieved.
This model supports the following technologies and instructions: AES-NI – acceleration of applications using encryption; AVX – acceleration of processing photo and video content; vPro – optimization for corporate use; Enhanced SpeedStep (EIST) – optimization for energy saving; Hyper-Threading – multithreading; Idle States; Thermal Monitoring. Security technologies: EDB, Secure Key, MPX, Identity Protection, OS Guard. Virtual machine acceleration technologies: AMD-V, VT-d, VT-x, EPT.
A notable moment in this processor is support for a large amount of RAM – up to 128GB DDR4 with a frequency of 2666MHz, including dual-channel. On the other hand, this model will not see ECC memory.
The processor contains an integrated video module Intel HD Graphics 630, which supports simultaneous connection of up to 3 monitors. Supports DirectX 12 and OpenGL 4.5.
- high performance at low heating;
- large memory support up to 128GB;
- broad support for productivity and safety technologies;
- an attractive combination of price and performance;
- built-in graphics.
- does not support RAM with error correction;
- locked multiplier.
Best mid-range gaming processors
The second selection in our review represents a group of conditional mid-range processors that are optimal for assembling a solid, but not too expensive gaming computer. Here, under the average level, we conventionally take those processors that, together with a powerful video card, are capable of delivering an average fps in demanding games above 60 at a FullHD resolution of 1920×1080. Let's consider two models each from AMD and Intel.
AMD Ryzen 5 2600
The selection will open with an interesting solution from AMD – the Ryzen 52600 processor. It was released in April 2018, and some experts called it a 'failed favorite'.
The thing is that the aforementioned AMD Ryzen 5 1600 became the real favorite in the AMD Ryzen 5 series among our compatriots at one time precisely because of the minimum price, and the outstanding characteristics against its background turned out to be a 'pleasant bonus'. In the case of the AMD Ryzen 5 2600, we see clearly higher performance that can be obtained for a very modest difference in price. And with the inevitable obsolescence of the previous model, the more recent Ryzen 5 2600 has gradually won decent demand and trust.
This processor is built on the basis of the improved Zen + architecture, and differs sharply from the previous one by at least the same lithography – 12nm process technology. This already made it possible for the crystal to maintain exactly the same heat dissipation power TDP 65W, as all the models described above, with a noticeable increase in performance. Compatible with socket AM4.
As for performance, here we see 6 cores and 12 threads, but the maximum clock speed is already 3.9 GHz when using the overclocking capabilities – the multiplier for AMD Ryzen 5 2600 is unlocked. The cache of the first, second and third levels – 576KB, 3MB and 16MB, respectively.
The processor supports exactly the same technologies, instructions and virtualization technologies as the Ryzen 5 1600: AES-NI, AVX, AMD-V. Supports faster DDR4 2933 RAM up to 64GB, including ECC and dual channel. And there is no integrated video card here either.
The general conclusion for this model is as follows. It makes sense to buy it for an upgrade if the existing processor is much older and weaker. If the former favorite is worth – AMD Ryzen 5 1600, then changing it to Ryzen 5 2600 is not very advisable, since the difference in performance will not be the most significant. It is better to pay a small difference and get a more tangible result.
- technical process 12nm;
- 6 cores, 12 threads;
- low heat release power;
- unlocked multiplier;
- support for dual-channel memory, including ECC.
- no built-in graphics.
Intel Core i5-9400F
Now let's look at the closest rival of the previous one in the review of the AMD Ryzen 5 2600 processor and its slightly improved modification AMD Ryzen 5 2600X. This is the Core i5-9400F. The reader may wonder why not Core i5-9400 without any F in the nomenclature, and we will immediately clarify this point.
The series of processors Intel Core i5 with index F are stripped down versions of the same models without this index. But the only obvious difference in the limited edition is the lack of integrated graphics. There is also such a nuance as not using solder, but these are subtle things that are important for overclockers, who are already well aware of the topic without us. So, in this particular case, the experts, as an exception, did not count the lack of a video card as the model's shortcomings, since this was originally conceived and gives not a symbolic, but more than a tangible difference in price. The 9400F is much cheaper than the 9400.
Now specifically about the specifications and characteristics. The processor is built on the Coffee Lake architecture using the 14nm process technology. 6 cores in 6 threads at a maximum frequency of 4.1 GHz. Overclocking only within Turbo Boost 2.0, as the multiplier is locked. Supports DDR4 2666MHz RAM in large capacity up to 128GB, including dual-channel. ECC error correction memory is not supported. Compatible with FC socket LG A1151. Heat dissipation by power TDP 65W.
The processor is equipped with built-in support for improvement technologies: AES-NI, AVX, EIST, the already mentioned Turbo Boost 2.0, Idle States, Thermal Monitoring; security – EDB, Secure Key, MPX, Identity Protection, OS Guard; virtual machines – VT-d, VT-x and EPT.
As you can see, if we take the parameters in their pure form, then this model is comparable in performance with the previous one, sometimes even inferior to it – at least in the cache and support for high-frequency RAM. But this is still Intel with all both fundamental and purely subjective advantages.
- combination of performance and heat dissipation;
- Supports memory up to 128GB, including dual-channel;
- combination of price and performance.
- locked multiplier;
- does not support ECC error correction memory.
Intel Core i5-9600K
And another smart product Intel in the selection of the best mid-range gaming processors by version is the Core i5-9600K. This processor is more interesting than the previous one, and provides a field for overclockers to experiment.
There is a lot in common between this and the previous options. These are 6 cores and 6 threads, 14nm manufacturing process, support for exactly the same 2666MHz DDR4 memory in a large volume up to 128GB, including dual-channel and excluding ECC. Almost exactly the same cache: 384Kb, 256K per core, and 9Mb for the 1st, 2nd and 3rd levels, respectively. Installed on the same FC socket LG A1151.
The difference between these two models is as follows. First, we see a free multiplier here, which is good news for overclocking enthusiasts. Secondly, the upper clock frequency is a little higher – 4.6 GHz, and this is already taking into account the possible overclocking, both through Turbo Boost 2.0, and directly through the multiplier. And thirdly, the most noticeable nuance – this model already has built-in graphics Intel UHD Graphics 630. As in other models, nothing special can be said about it, except that it just is. This can be important when gradually assembling a gaming computer, in which the cost of a video card can be more than half of the total amount.
Against the background of all that has been said, one cannot but mention the increased heat dissipation power – TDP 95W as the advantages of this model. This is an increase of almost 50% over any of the previous models. You need to keep this in mind when choosing a cooling system, since boxed coolers are rarely able to cope with gaming loads.
If we take the test results Intel Core i5-9600K in the game, then we can note that this model almost exactly corresponds to the 'average level' characteristic. In the summary comparison tables when testing in one of the most demanding games at the turn of 2019-2020 (for example, Assassin's Creed Odyssey), the processor is located exactly in the middle at nominal parameters and slightly higher, up to the top three, when overclocked.
Recall that this is all relevant for the FullHD resolution of 1920 × 1080 and the top-end video card GeForce RTX 2080 Ti. With such a combination in the conventionally reference Assassin's Creed Odyssey, the processor will pull the minimum fps 59-60 and the average more than 80.
- high clock frequency;
- overclocking capability (free multiplier);
- overall good performance;
- average fps in the most demanding games in tandem with GeForce RTX 2080 Ti – over 80.
- increased heat release power;
- does not support error correction memory.
AMD Ryzen 5 3600
Completing the selection of the best mid-range gaming processors is another model from AMD – the Ryzen 5 3600 processor. There is also a 'twin brother' with the X index – Ryzen 5 3600X in the AMD assortment, but our experts do not recommend it due to the negligible difference in real gaming performance with a substantial – about $ 50 – difference in price.
Ryzen 5 3600 at the time of its release in July of last 2019, fans of getting ahead of ourselves began to call it a 'potential Core i7 killer'. It then looked like nothing more than loud statements, but it turned out that this model has something to boast about.
The processor is built on the progressive Zen 2 architecture, contains 6 cores working in 12 threads. What is probably most noteworthy, when filling the crystal with the transistor component, a combination of 12nm and 7nm technical processes was used. That is, in this product we are the embodiment of technologies that have come close to the physical limit of the production of integrated circuits by methods known to mankind.
The processor has a free multiplier, the maximum clock frequency is 3.8GHz without overclocking, and when overclocked – up to 4.2GHz. Supports 3.2GHz high speed DDR4 RAM, including dual channel, excluding ECC. There is no integrated video module
The processor is installed on the same AM4 socket as all the above AMD models. In this we must pay tribute to the manufacturer – in terms of backward compatibility, he is doing better than Intel. And here, too, an increased heat dissipation power TDP of 95W is observed.
- 12nm and 7nm technical processes;
- support for high-speed memory, including dual-channel;
- free multiplier;
- sufficiently high rated clock frequency;
- relatively affordable price (especially in comparison with the X-modification).
- no built-in graphics;
- does not support error correction memory.
The best high-end gaming processors
Now let's start reviewing several processor models that are already capable of something significantly more than a conventional average level. Here, we will consider the ability to reproduce gameplay in QHD 2K 2560×1440 with high fps as a starting point. As for the resolution of the previous group – FullHD, such processors give outrageous values of 120fps and higher (with a powerful video card), so it definitely makes sense to improve the picture quality, and even try 4K in places. The models are sorted in order of power and overall performance, so the latter on the list are quite capable of providing comfortable 4K gaming.
Intel Core i7-8700K
Let's start with a very interesting and at the same time slightly ambiguous sentence from Intel. This is an 8th generation Intel Core i7 series processor – 6-core 8700K. In fact, it came out as a quick response Intel to the release of the market-exploding AMD Ryzen series, namely 6-core 12-thread models.
It's not hard to assume that the Core i7-8700K is also 6-core and 12-thread. Kernels – Coffee Lake-S. The nominal frequency is 3.7GHz, the maximum overclocked is 4.7GHz. There is an integrated UHD 630 graphics with a frequency of 1.2GHz. Lithography – 14nm.
The processor is installed on socket LG A1151 v2, that is, the platform from the previous generation, although it will be completely physically compatible, the processor will not 'start' on it. A forced motherboard upgrade may upset many, and although this is not entirely correct, we take into account the opinions of buyers and count this as a shortcoming of the model.
The Core i7-8700K is compatible with 2666MHz DDR4 memory up to 128GB, including dual channel. Cache configuration: 384KB, 1.5MB, 12MB. Heat dissipation level – 95W.
It is worth clarifying here that there is nothing revolutionary about this configuration. In Intel we went the extensive way, just adding cores and raising the frequency with a simple overclocking. And if we compare the behavior of the processor in the most demanding games, its performance will not differ much from the previous generation 7700K.
Why is 8700K better then? There are several points here. At the time of the release of fresh toys in 2018-2019, few of them were optimized for such a processor configuration. Moreover, optimization was 'limp' by definition in almost every one, and only a few games really used the full potential of the 8700K. But now 6 cores are no longer exotic, and there is good reason to believe that new gaming products will be less wasteful.
Finally, there is such a moment as streaming. Now more and more gamers go online and broadcast their game to the delight of the public on YouTube and Twitch, and this requires an impressive additional power. And this is where seemingly redundant and not really involved cores come to the rescue.
- 6 cores and 12 threads;
- Supports memory up to 128GB;
- built-in graphics;
- free multiplier;
- not a bad configuration for game streaming.
- Compatible with 3xx series chipsets only.
Intel Core i7-9700K
To close the topic of processors Intel Core i7, consider another vivid example of the 9th generation of this series. The model received 2 more cores in addition and an even higher frequency. Like its predecessor, the 9700K became the product of an 'arms race' between Intel and AMD after the latter set about systematically destroying a competitor with its shiny Ryzen series. 'Destroy' is, of course, loudly said, since Intel has something to answer.
So, here we are also dealing with mechanically adding cores and inflating to the clock frequency limit. All this is on the 14mm process technology, and this is against the background of 12- and 7-nanometer samples from AMD. So, these series can be considered a kind of 'last breath' of 14-nanometer lithography for top central processors Intel.
Briefly about the specification. The Core i7-9700K is built on the Coffee Lake S architecture, has 8 cores working in 8 threads. The multiplier is unlocked, the maximum clock frequency is 4.9GHz. Works with DDR4-2666 RAM up to 128GB. Cache configuration: 1st level – 512KB; 2nd – 256KB per core; 3rd – 16MB. Installed on socket LG A-1151. Heat dissipation level – TDP 95 W. Onboard there is an integrated video card Intel UHD Graphics 630 with a chip frequency of 1.20GHz.
From the subtle nuances in this model, the return of solder as a thermal interface of the inner part can be distinguished. Previous decisions have been harshly criticized, and the return to 'good old' has generated positive feedback from overclockers and professional users.
The closest competitor from AMD for this model is Ryzen 7 2700X, and we will consider further a more advanced option – Ryzen 7 3700X.
- 8 cores;
- high clock frequency;
- free multiplier;
- Supports memory up to 128GB;
- built-in video card.
- technical process 14nm (here it can already be considered a disadvantage).
AMD Ryzen 7 3700X
And the incredible Ryzen 7 3700X puts the end to the selection of the best high-end gaming processors according to the version. And it is incredible for almost everyone – configuration, technical process, frequency, affordable cost, and most importantly – a combination of all these characteristics in one high-tech product.
To be fair, let's say that there were a lot of inflated expectations associated with the Ryzen 7 3700X, so after the official release, some were disappointed. But this is the problem of the 'dreamers', not the processor itself.
First, let's look at the specification in its purest form. AMD Ryzen 7 3700X is brand new – it was released last July 2019. The processor is built on the Zen2 architecture. Eight physical cores in this case already look much more solid than in the previous model due to 16 threads, and first of all lithography itself – revolutionary 7nm. And this at a time when Intel still continued to 'torment' the outgoing 14nm process technology.
The processor operates at a frequency of up to 4.4 GHz. Cache distribution – 512KB; 512KB per core; 32MB for three levels sequentially, starting with the first. The multiplier is unlocked. Supports high speed DDR4 memory up to 3.2GB. Everything is connected to the same unchanged AM4 socket. And pay attention to the heat dissipation – its estimated power is only 65W. Last but not least, the super-thin 7nm process technology played a role here.
This processor differs from the previous Intel model in many ways, and in general it is difficult to say where it loses to it. In terms of gaming, in its price category it simply has no equal, since the price itself is a bit discouraging with its availability, if you understand what class of device we are talking about.
The processor can still be blamed for the lack of integrated graphics. Since the model is still very affordable, many buyers can equip it with regular office PCs. In this case, finding out that you need to buy a separate video card can be an unpleasant surprise. But already in the next selection we will not pay attention to this detail, assuming that the buyer clearly understands what he chooses.
- 7nm lithography;
- 8 cores and 16 threads;
- high clock frequency;
- free multiplier;
- many innovations and improvements over previous generations;
- affordable price for a powerful processor.
- no built-in graphics.
Intel Core i9-9900KS
This part of the review of the best gaming processors according to the magazine ends with the most, perhaps, the brightest solution available on the market, even without regard to cost. The company itself Intel did not become shy and positioned the 9900KS as 'the world's best processor for gaming'. Admittedly, it's hard to disagree with them.
The processor is built on the Coffee Lake architecture. Unlike the 9700K described above, here we see not just eight cores, but also 16 threads. At the same time, the lithography is 14nm, which already looks strange compared to the 7nm of the previous model from AMD. Rated clock speed – up to 4GHz, with Turbo Boost – up to 5GHz. The multiplier is free, but it is difficult to squeeze anything more out of the processor using it. This is a disappointment for overclockers, but against the background of the overall favorable picture with the specification, it doesn't look too fundamental.
The processor interacts with DDR4-2666 memory up to 128GB, including 2-channel. Installed on socket LG A-1151. But besides the socket, it also needs the appropriate chipset – not lower than Intel Z390. The heat dissipation power of the processor is expectedly increased, and significantly – TDP 127W.
Some of the deciding factors that made this model truly the best for gaming are its outstanding ring bus efficiency and a truly fast memory controller. There is simply not a single weak link in the chain of functional modules that would slow down the whole 'company'.
Although this model is the most productive, powerful, balanced and generally interesting in this collection of review, there is little more to say about it in terms of features. Intel The Core i9-9900KS is truly one of the best gaming processor solutions on the market. But, I must admit, its price will make many people think hard about whether to take such a step.
- 8 cores 16 threads;
- support for RAM up to 128GB;
- free multiplier;
- efficient ring tire;
- fast memory controller;
- one of the best configurations for early 2020 games.
- heat dissipation;
- the price is sharply and significantly higher than the nearest comparable models.
The best top processors for gaming streaming
And now we got to the most interesting thing – top solutions, above which only professional Hi-End solutions. These are real 'monsters' in a good way – powerful, fast-paced, resource-intensive (to be honest), incredibly productive and with a large margin for the future development of the gaming industry. Their main task is to provide not only a comfortable game of the most demanding modern toys at maximum speed, but also to keep up with all this broadcast on the Internet in good quality.
It is worth emphasizing here that for a 'pure' game without streaming or other resource-intensive applications running in parallel, buying a processor with more than a dozen physical cores is too redundant and wasteful decision. The same AMD Ryzen 9 3950X in February 2010 costs under 60 thousand rubles. It makes sense to invest that kind of money in a gaming computer only if these investments have to be somehow 'recouped' through the same donations on streams or in any other way related to commercial gaming.
AMD Ryzen 9 3950X
Let us first consider the most controversial solution from AMD, which received a fair amount of criticism from specialized experts, but still our specialists included it in the review for a number of objective reasons. This is the Ryzen 9 3950X with its incredible 16 cores.
This is AMD's flagship product and has definitely taken the premium desktop processor to the next level. But for gaming in its purest form, as mentioned above, this option is not appropriate to consider. Most modern games are able to rationally use a maximum of 8 cores. Rarely what games are capable of more, and it's not worth talking about loading all 16. That is why Ryzen 9 3950X makes sense only if, in addition to playing at maximum speed, it is planned to run in parallel any other resource-intensive processes – the same streaming in high quality.
But let's turn to the specifications, and there is definitely something to evaluate. The processor is built on the latest 7nm process technology. 16 Matisse cores run in 32 threads. The nominal frequency is 3.5 GHz, the maximum is 4.7 GHz. Supports DDR4 RAM at 3.2GHz. And here lies an obvious flaw, which is difficult to reasonably explain – the memory is supported by no more than two-channel. Thus, the processor is clearly and distinctly not a Hi-End solution, where support for 4-channel memory would be a necessary norm.
The processor is installed on an unchanged AM4 socket, characterized by a relatively low heat release for such an exorbitant power – at the level of 105W – not least the latest and finest lithography has already worked here.
All of this is reflected in the Ryzen 9 3950X's gaming performance as expected. The processor fully provides approximately comparable fps with the older models of the Ryzen 3000 family. In terms of gaming performance, they are all slightly inferior to the Core i9-9900KS described in the previous collection Intel and even its 'relative' without indexes. However, the developers managed to strike a balance between working with a small number of threads and interacting with system memory and cache.
To summarize, let us say that this model, despite all the ambiguity, is optimal for those users who plan to combine work in heavy applications and play at maximum speed with streaming on one machine in equally heavy toys. For the price, by the way, the Ryzen 9 3950X in February 2020 is more expensive than the above-described Intel Core i9-9900KS is no longer several times, but only a quarter.
- 16 cores 32 threads;
- technical process 7nm;
- innovative solutions;
- relatively low heat generation against the background of prohibitive performance.
- does not support 4-channel RAM;
- high price.
Intel Core i9-9920X
The review of the best gaming processors according to the magazine ends with the top solution from Intel – the super-powerful Core i9-9920X processor. This is an even more difficult option in terms of making a purchasing decision, given its cost. But within the framework of the tasks set – playing at maximum speed and parallel streaming in high quality – there are still no special alternatives if we consider the processors Intel. Rather, there are alternatives, but more expensive, and so much more expensive that they are practically not on sale in Russia.
So Intel Core i9-9920X is a premium 12-core processor built on the Skylake-X architecture for home desktop systems. Lithography – all the same 14nm, which looks very strange here, but this is the policy Intel – to squeeze everything possible and impossible from the technology. The cores operate in 24 threads at 3.5 GHz. The multiplier is unlocked. DDR4-2666 memory is supported, and here it is worth praising the creators – the processor can work with 4-channel memory. The cache of the first level is 768KB, the second is 12MB, and the third is 19.25MB.
A suitable socket for this processor is Socket 2066. The heat dissipation level is expectedly high – it corresponds to a TDP of 165W. There is no built-in video card.
In addition to comfortable gaming with streaming or the simultaneous work of 'heavy' processes such as rendering video or 3D content, practitioners note the high suitability of this processor for a related area – comprehensive testing of video games.
And once again we repeat, if it is only supposed to play, even at the highest settings, then today there simply does not exist such a game in nature that would use the resources of such a processor at least in any rational way. Moreover, even the operating system itself Windows does not work very intelligently and efficiently with threads. Therefore, for the game, the best Intel Core i9-9900KS remains, but not everyone can afford it.
- 12 cores 24 threads;
- free multiplier;
- 4-channel memory supported;
- optimal for streaming games and for testing games.
- technical process 14nm;
- high price.
Attention! This rating is subjective and does not constitute an advertisement and does not serve as a purchase guide. Before buying, you need to consult with a specialist.